09-20: MediaTek reportedly has finished the design of AI computing unit in the mobile phone SoC; PlayNitride will start trial mass production of mobile micro-LED panels as early as 2H17; etc.

Chipsets

MediaTek reportedly has finished the design of AI computing unit in the mobile phone SoC, and expects to be available on Helio P70 launched in 2018. The SoC will be equipped with neural and visual processing unit (NVPU), and expects to be manufactured with TSMC’s 12nm process. (Laoyaoba, EE World, China Times)

Qualcomm has announced an end-to-end 802.11ax portfolio, which includes the IPQ8074 system-on-chip (SoC) for network infrastructure and QCA6290 solution for client devices, making Qualcomm Technologies the first company to announce end-to-end commercial solutions to support 802.11ax.  (CN Beta, Qualcomm)

Synaptics has announced its new VideoSmart BG5CT multimedia solution featuring 4K Advanced HDR video processing for the global set-top-box market. The Synaptics VideoSmart BG5CT is the company’s 6th-generation video processor technology and part of the award-winning multimedia portfolio recently acquired from Marvell.  (Laoyaoba, Global Newswire, Synaptics)

Touch Display

Taiwan’s PlayNitride, which is the leader in the micro-LED sector, will start trial mass production of mobile micro-LED panels as early as 2H17, and commercial product with micro-LED will be launched in 2018. As PlayNitride is invested by AUO, Epistar and UMC, once PlayNitride starts mass producing micro-LED, AUO has the chance to mass produce micro-LED products. (Laoyaoba, Sigmaintell, UDN, Digitimes, press, Business Korea, China Times)

FlexEnable, leader in the development and industrialization of organic electronics for flexible displays and sensors, has signed a technology transfer and license agreement with Truly Semiconductors. The deal aims to bring FlexEnable’s flexible organic liquid crystal display (OLCD) technology into mass production on Truly’s lines within 2018. (Laoyaoba, Truly, EE World, FlexEnable, Business Insider)

TrendForce anticipates OLED’s representation in the smartphone market will increase substantially following the release of iPhone X. With Apple expected to support this display technology in the future, the percentage of OLED models in the total annual smartphone shipments worldwide is projected to climb from 28% in 2017 to 33% in 2018. Based on TrendForce’s latest projection, models featuring 18:9 screens are going to make up 9.6% of 2017 total smartphone shipments worldwide. This penetration rate will then soar in 2018, coming to around 36.2% of the global annual shipments. (TrendForce[cn], TrendForce)

Memory

TrendForce forecasts that the global DRAM supply for 2018 will show an annual bit growth of just 19.6%, which is another low in recent years. The global top 3 major DRAM suppliers – Samsung, SK Hynix and Micron – are now in the midst of their capacity planning for 2018. TrendForce also forecasts that the annual global DRAM bit demand for 2018 will grow by a larger margin of 20.6%. Hence, the general trend of undersupply will persist. (Laoyaoba, TrendForce[cn], TrendForce)

Biometrics

KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicates that Apple is likely to ditch Touch ID altogether, so long as Face ID presents a positive experience for consumers. In his view, TrueDepth camera could create many innovative applications, Face ID being the most important of them. (Apple Insider, Sina)

Smartphones

According to Cambridge Analytica, between Apple iPhone and Android device owners, the Apple supporters are more than 2.3% more likely to drive a Honda over their Android contemporaries. BMW came in behind that, with a 1.8% difference in ownership of that particular car manufacturer’s product. Android users are more likely vehicles of the Dodge, Chrysler, and Hyundai variety. iPhone owners have a much stronger preference for Swedish clothing brand H&M’s items than Android owners. Apple users are also more likely to shop at Forever 21Nike, and Nordstorm, as compared to Android owners over the last 6 months. (HNHH, Fortune, My Drivers)

Yotaphone CEO Zhang Guangqiang reveals that Yota 3 target for the first year is to reach about 1M units sales. (My Drivers, Sohu)

Panasonic Eluga Ray 500 and 700 are launched in India: Ray 500 – 5” HD IPS LCD display, MediaTek MT6737 processor, rear dual 13MP-8PM + front 5MP cameras, 3GB RAM, 32GB storage, 4000mAh battery, INR8,999. Ray 700 – 5.5” FHD IPS LCD display, MediaTek MT6753 processor, rear 13MP + front 13MP cameras, 3GB RAM, 32GB storage, 5000mAh battery, INR9,999. (Android Authority, NDTV, India Today)

Chialin Chang, President of Smartphones and Connected Devices Business at HTC, said the company will release 6~7 phones in 2017. So far, it has released 4 devices –One X10 and U11 are the other 2. (Gizmo China, GSM Arena, Sohu)

Yotaphone YOTA 3 is unveiled in China – 5.5” FHD AMOLED display + 5.2” HD E-Ink Carta display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, rear 12MP + front 13MP cameras, 4GB RAM, 64 / 128GB storage, fingerprint scanner,  3300mAh battery, CNY3699 / CNY4299. (Android Headlines, Liliputing, Phone Radar, GizChina)

Gionee X1s is launched in India –  5.2” HD IPS LCD display, MediaTek MT6737T processor, rear 13MP + front 16MP cameras, 3GB RAM, 16GB storage, 4000mAh battery, INR12,999. (Android Authority, NDTV, Indian Express)

ZTE Tempo X is launched at Boost Mobile – 5” WVGA display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 processor, 5M + 2MP cameras, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage, 2200mAh battery, USD80. (GSM Arena, ZTE)

Meizu M6 is unveiled in China – 5.2” HD 2.5D curved display, MediaTek MT6750 processor, 13MP + 8MP cameras, 2 / 3GB RAM, 16 / 32GB storage, 3070mAh battery, from CNY699. (Android Headlines, Sohu, Huanqiu, Android Authority, GSM Arena, Meizu)

Sugar is launching new full-display SOAP R11 – 5.7” 1440×720 HD+ display, (maybe) Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor, rear 13MP + front 16MP cameras, 3 / 4GB RAM, 32 / 64GB storage, 3000mAh battery, from CNY899. (CN Beta, iGeekPhone, Sohu, ePrice)

PCs / Tablets

Lenovo launches 4 tablets in India: Tab 4 8 / 8 Plus – 8” 1280×800 / 1920×1200 display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 / 625 processor, 5MP+2MP / 8MP +5MP cameras, 2 / 4GB RAM, 16 / 64GB storage, 4850mAh battery. Tab 4 10 / 10 Plus – 10.1” 1280×800 / 1920×1200 display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 / 625 processor, 8MP + 5MP cameras, 2 / 4GB RAM, 16 / up to 64GB storage, 7000mAh battery.  (Android Headlines, Hans India, The  Verge, Phone Radar)

Wearables

HTC’s new standalone VR headset reportedly will launch as the HTC Vive Focus and will be powered by Google’s Daydream.  (Gizmo China, Phandroid, Trusted Reviews, Pocket-Lint)

Pimax launches Kicsktarter campaign for 8K VR headset, which has twin 3840×2160 pixel displays. The displays feature a 16×9 aspect ratio, the 2 side-by-side panels offer an incredibly wide 200º field of view.  (Liliputing, Tom’s Hardware, Kickstarter, Heix, 3DMgame)

Amazon.com engineers are reportedly creating a pair of “smart glasses” to let users access the company’s Alexa virtual assistant from anywhere and at any time. A bone-conduction audio system would allow the wearer to hear Alexa without having to insert headphones into their ears.  (Android Headlines, Financial Times, The Verge, The Street, Sohu, Tencent)

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